06/06/2024 mintpressnews.com  5 min 🇬🇧 #249993

Sold to the Highest Bidder: Trump to Greenlight Israeli Annexation for Campaign Funds

 Robert Inlakesh  

Facing financial ruin from ongoing legal battles, former President Donald Trump is poised to sell out American foreign policy for campaign cash, with pro-Israel billionaire Miriam Adelson offering to bankroll his bid-if he lets Israel annex the West Bank.

According to a  report in the Israeli daily Haaretz, pro-Israel billionaire Miriam Adelson seeks to bankroll Donald Trump's campaign on the condition that he support the annexation of the West Bank.

Adelson, the sixth wealthiest woman in the United States, inherited her fortune from the late Sheldon Adelson, a prominent Republican Party mega-donor. In 2017, Sheldon Adelson  famously said, "I'm a one-issue person. That issue is Israel."

As president, Trump was  labeled the most pro-Israel leader in American history and frequently boasted about his support for Tel Aviv. In November 2017, the Trump administration  announced its recognition of occupied Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, breaking from the international consensus and dealing a blow to the so-called two-state solution.

The inauguration of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem in May 2018 coincided with a massacre of around 60 unarmed Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip during the mass non-violent Great Return March demonstrations.

Trump  supported the idea of Jerusalem becoming the undivided capital of Israel despite East Jerusalem being illegally annexed in 1980, a move rejected by the United Nations. Additionally, he recognized the illegally occupied Syrian Golan Heights, annexed by Israel in 1981, as officially part of the Jewish state.

He also appointed David Friedman as his ambassador to Israel. Friedman refused to refer to Palestinian-occupied territories as such, instead  calling it an "alleged occupation."

In addition to approving what he labeled the "Deal of the Century," Trump supported a plan to resolve the Palestine-Israel conflict by attempting to implement an agreement that would deprive Palestinians of genuine autonomy and trade occupied East Jerusalem for Abu Dis as the planned "Capital of Palestine." The deal was put together by Trump's son-in-law, Jared Kushner, whose family foundation had  financed illegal West Bank settlements and extremist Zionist yeshivas.

It was later  revealed that in exchange for Trump moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem, his campaign received substantial financing from Sheldon Adelson. Adelson "gave $20 million to a super PAC working to elect him" with the understanding that the "one-issue person" was seeking pro-Israel stances and policies in return.

At one point during Trump's presidency, his appointed ambassador to Israel and former bankruptcy lawyer, David Friedman, was  allowed to "go rogue" and falsely informed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that the Trump administration would support annexing areas of the West Bank, according to Jared Kushner in his 2022 book, "Breaking History."

As the former American president scrambles for financial contributions amidst four major legal battles, concerns have been raised about the possibility of Trump recognizing Israeli annexation of the West Bank if the Israeli-born Miriam Adelson becomes his top campaign financier.

In 2019, Netanyahu  announced his intention to annex the Jordan Valley area of the occupied West Bank, receiving substantial support from the settler movement and his right-wing base. He later reneged on his pledge to annex the territory, citing the Trump administration's "Abraham Accords" normalization agreements, which led to the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain establishing ties with Israel. Subsequently, Sudan and Morocco joined these agreements.

If Israel is to establish de jure control over the West Bank, it is unlikely the entire territory would be annexed. Instead, the area known as Area C, which constitutes about 60% of the occupied West Bank, would be integrated into what is called "Israel proper." This is because the majority of Israeli settlements and settler outposts are established in that area, where Israel already maintains complete military control.

In West Bank Areas A and B, where the majority of the 3.3 million Palestinians live, the Palestinian Authority maintains partial control and operates its own security forces.

Feature photo |U.S. President Donald Trump touches the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest prayer site, in Jerusalem's Old City, May 22, 2017. Ronen Zvulun |AP

Robert Inlakesh is a political analyst, journalist and documentary filmmaker currently based in London, UK. He has reported from and lived in the occupied Palestinian territories and hosts the show 'Palestine Files'. Director of 'Steal of the Century: Trump's Palestine-Israel Catastrophe'. Follow him on Twitter @falasteen47